Hickman line

Chest Xray showing the normal course of a Hickman line

Chest Xray showing the normal course of a Hickman line, usually used for delivering intravenous medication, and taking blood, in leukaemia patients. The line as shown is partly in the body and partly over the skin of the chest. The Hickman line is placed just below the clavicle (collar bone) on the patients right side (it can be on the left) into the subclavian vein. It is then fed through to the superior vena cava which drains blood from the upper body, head and neck into the heart. The end of the line lies in the superior vena cava about 6 inches (15 cm) above the heart (right atrium).